First Baptist Church, Huntsville, AL
Thursday, March 23, 2017

The Sanctuary Design For Worship

The architectural design of the sanctuary presents numerous theological affirmations. The unusual shape of the building - expanding outward from the pulpit to the outer doors - and the seven arches of the roof suggest its central purpose.

This is a place for the proclamation of the good news of God in Christ Jesus to all the world. The seven bays of the roofline symbolize the seven trumpets of God that herald the final advent of Christ in the book of Revelation. The number seven in the Bible represents completeness or perfection. Seven outer doors under the mosaic across the front of the building denote the invitation to all people to enter into the worship of God.

Take a Virtual Tour of the Sanctuary.

Inside the Sanctuary, the arrangement of the pulpit, communion table, baptistry, and the stained glass windows communicate the focus of worship. The pulpit is in the center of the nave, signifying the central purpose of proclaiming the word of God. On the front of the pulpit is a cross, a reminder that the cross of Christ is the heart of the message to be preached. The stained glass window in the baptistry depicts the cross of Christ, lifted up to draw all people to himself. Behind and above the pulpit is the baptistry. Here, believers confess their faith and follow Christ as a result of the proclamation of his redeeming gospel. Their baptism takes place at the foot of the cross.

In front of and below the pulpit is the communion table. Faithful response to the word of God unites us in the community of believers. As we break the Bread of Life, the word of God, we are invited to share the bread and the cup in the Lord's Supper, symbolizing our participation in the living body of Christ, the church, and our fellowship in the new covenant initiated in the blood of Christ.

The Casavant pipe organ is renowned as one of the finest instruments in the American Southeast. It is named in loving honor of Mrs. Frank Ware, organist of First Baptist Church from 1901-61. The organ, built by Casavant Freres, Limited, of St. Hyacinthe, Quebec, Canada, was installed in the new Sanctuary prior to opening day services, February 20, 1966. The magnificence of the organ calls worshipers to lift their voices together in exuberant praise of God.

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